Getting into Nordic Walking

326 TUTOR: Ashley Sandy (NWUK Delivery Partner, L2 Fitness Instructor)

Nordic walking was developed in Finland in the 1930s as summer training for cross-country skiers. It is hugely popular in Europe and, over the last 10 years, has taken off in the UK. Nordic walking uses special lightweight poles to increase effort and is a low-impact, full-body workout that is gentle on the joints. Although you will work harder and burn more calories than walking alone, the perceived exertion is about the same. This course is suitable for any age and fitness as long as you are able to walk around four miles at a reasonable pace. The course is open to both complete beginners and those that have tried Nordic walking before. You will work on learning and improving technique as well as discovering some lovely trails on the Marlborough Downs and in the surrounding countryside.

Course Notes

A course designed for both the complete beginner to learn Nordic Walking and for those who have tried Nordic walking before but would like to refresh and improve their technique. Nordic walking poles are provided on this course suitable to your body shape, height and fitness levels.

Over the week you will learn how to handle the poles and use them correctly. We will start with the basic techniques of Nordic Walking on the college grounds on the first day. Those who are already able to Nordic walk will undertake a short refresher session and then a walk with our walk leader.

Over the week we will take walks in the surrounding countryside practicing with the poles and learning to use them on more varied and hilly terrain. We will use drills and fun exercises to demonstrate techniques. Each day will build on the previous day and working up to longer walks towards the end of the week. We will enjoy walks in Marlborough Downs, Pewsey Vale, Kennet & Avon Canal and the historical areas around Avebury.

We will also spend time honing your Nordic Walking techniques to ensure you get the most out of your walks. This will include faster, more efficient walking and hill techniques and will always include a full warm up and cool down and stretch at the end of the session.

Pre-requisites for the course

You will be expected to walk at a reasonable pace, working up to between 4-5 miles towards the end of the week. Although Nordic walking is for everyone, it is preferable that you are able to walk a few miles at a decent pace, so that the enjoyment of the group remains together although faster walkers are able to do loop-backs and extra drills to keep their pace up.

Poles will be provided by the instructor suitable to your body shape, height & ability. You may bring your own poles but if the instructor deems that they are not suitable you may be asked to use their poles instead.

Please make sure you have suitable clothing and footwear for walking in the open countryside. Walking shoes or sturdy trainers (please avoid very stiff leather walking boots as you are unable to fully flex your foot when walking), trousers or shorts and several layers to enable you to add or take away depending on the weather conditions. Walkers should also bring a small backpack with water, hat, spare clothing/waterproofs/socks, sunscreen, treatment for blisters and insect repellent and a small snack. It is much better to carry spare clothing in your backpack than tie round your waist, which can interfere with the poles.

If you need any medication (such as inhalers) please make sure you carry this with you. You will be expected to complete a health questionnaire to ensure you are suitable to walk.

Course Tutor

Ashley Sandy

NWUK Delivery Partner, L2 Fitness Instructor

About Ashley

Ashley Sandy has been Nordic Walking for many years after learning the techniques when living in Switzerland. She has always liked to keep fit and healthy and enjoys exploring lots of walks in the Marlborough area. Keen to share her passion for Nordic Walking with as many as possible, Ashley qualified as a fitness instructor and to teach Nordic Walking in early 2015 and has been teaching and leading groups in the Marlborough area since then.

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Summer School Dates for 2022

All courses run for 5 days

WK 1 11 Jul - 15 Jul

WK 2 18 Jul - 22 Jul

WK 3 25 Jul - 29 Jul

WK 4 1 Aug - 5 Aug

Morning Courses

9.15AM to 12.15PM

Afternoon Courses

1.45PM to 4.30PM

All Day Courses

9.15AM to 4.30PM